Royal Worcester Porcelain: Snippet Of The Day Number Three
When I decided to write a mini blog on Royal Worcester Porcelain, it was with some trepidation, as it has such a long and interesting history! I’m not sure I can do such an iconic company justice with just a few hundred words!
The company was founded back in 1751 by Dr John Wall (a Physician) and William Davis (an apothecary). They developed a method for producing porcelain and obtained investment to purchase a factory at Warmstry House, Worcester, England.
Royal Worcester porcelain is believed to be the oldest or second oldest remaining English porcelain brand still in existence today. Royal Crown Derby was established about the same time, so there is some debate as to which came first!
Early production at the Royal Worcester factory was rather haphazard. Significant improvements were made after the purchase of Benjamin Lund’s Bristol company, which brought additional technical expertise in to the company.
Worcester also obtained licences to mine soapstone in Cornwall. Worcester soapstone porcelain did not crack when boiling water was poured into it. This gave Worcester a significant advantage over other manufacturers.
The pottery have had some wonderful designers, potters, and artists through the decades. Here are a few of my favourite 19th and 20th Century landscape and animal painters. Many of these pieces sell for thousands of pounds!
The most enduring pattern produced by the porcelain manufacturer is “Evesham Gold.” First produced in 1961, it is still manufactured today. The pattern was named after the Vale of Evesham, an area of outstanding natural beauty in Worcestershire, England and famed for it’s autumnal fruits, which are depicted on the porcelain.
In 1976, Royal Worcester merged with Spode and production switched to factories in Stoke and abroad. The company has been part of the Portmeirion Pottery Group (Stoke- on- Trent) since 2009. Unfortunately, both the Royal Worcester and Spode Manufacturing facilities were shut down.
The Royal Worcester Museum is the only part of Royal Worcester left. The museum is currently closed for refurbishment but is well worth a visit! It was originally named after Charles William Dyson Perrins, whom took ownership of the Worcester factory in 1927. If that name sounds familiar it will be to those whom love Lea and Perrins Worcestershire sauce!